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Ferris Bueller's Day Off (Bueller...Bueller...Edition) (1986) Print E-mail
Tuesday, 05 May 2009
Image"Ferris Bueller's Day Off" is the quintessential example of a film classic.  It is by far the best of the John Hughes films.  Every child of the 80s remembers this film clearly.  It has more memorable lines than any other film I can think of.  Bueller truly stands the test of time.  It is cheesy, but oh so beautiful.

The film follows Ferris Bueller (Matthew Broderick), a high-school student that is smart but lazy.  He is suffering from senioritis big time.  The film opens with him faking an illness so that he can take a ninth sick day.  His parents buy his act, but his sister, Jeanie (Jennifer Grey) doesn't buy it and will set out later in the day to catch him in the act.

Jeffrey Jones plays our favorite school principal Edward R. Rooney.  He is also out to catch Ferris Bueller ditching school to make an example of him.  His secretary, Grace (Edie McClurg) is a comic genius.  She is bit player, but she definitely brings light to the screen.

Bueller's best friend, Cameron (Alan Rick) is a self-pitying individual that acts sick.  He is a bit of a sidekick.  He has no plans for the future and no girlfriend.  Bueller on the other hand will succeed in whatever he chooses in the future.  His girlfriend, Sloane Peterson (Mia Sara) is the star of the female high-school crowd – basically the cheerleader type without the ditsy behavior.

The threesome plays hooky for the day.  After taking a rare Ferrari from Cameron's father's garage, the three head into downtown Chicago.  Throughout the day they have great experiences at a baseball game, an art museum, Chez Luis and so much more.  We all remember the parade float sequence with "Danke Shoen" and "Twist and Shout."

This film is well put together.  All of the storylines are interesting and fit together.  The acting is cheesy put it just works.  The classic 80s music in the film and the score sets the tone for the film and pushes it along.  There is simply nothing bad about this film.  I don't have any more to say about it than, simply awesome!

Of course, my favorite would have to be Mia Sara.  I became hooked on her after she was discovered for the film, "Legend."  She has a charisma and screen presence that makes her a joy to watch. Unfortunately, while the movie itself is terrific, the video quality is some of the worst I have seen on the Blu-ray format.  First off, there is an enormous amount of dust and dirt plaguing the image.  Along with the film grain, the dust, dirt and blemishes are just too distracting to the viewing experience.  The black levels are weak.  For the most part any blacks appear as gray.  The colors are vibrant due to a significant boost in the contrast.  The balance between the contrast level and brightness level is awkward.  The balance, or lack thereof, creates an image that pops but falls flat at the same time.  The red of the Ferrari is sensational and doesn't suffer from any chroma bleed, but the rest of the image suffers.  Skintones fluctuate between normal and orange/red.  Details are strong however.  The readily apparent textures and details are worth the upgrade from the standard DVD to the Blu-ray.  The video is not horrible horrible, but it falls far short of more than 90 percent of the Blu-ray transfers.

The audio quality is much better than the video.  There isn't much to the sound design of this film.  The original mix of the film was in stereo.  While it was present on past standard definition releases, the Blu-ray is only equipped with the Dolby TrueHD 5.1 remix.  Don't expect a thing to pop up in the surrounds.  Disconnect your surround speakers and you won’t hear a difference.  The dialogue is anchored firmly in the center channel.  It is clear and crisp, sometimes bordering a bit on the brittle side.  The LFE channel is practically absent.  There are a couple instances in which is gets turned up, but very rarely.  Again, however, this is more of the original sound design and not the Blu-ray transfer.  There are no dynamics to the track, so you won't have to worry about peaks and dips in the audio track.  The frequency response doesn't appear to be full-range.  It suffers in the upper and lower-mids.

The Blu-ray comes with the same special features that were present on the previous standard DVD releases.  The bonus materials are all presented in standard definition.  First, there is a featurette, "Getting the Class Together: The Cast of 'Ferris Bueller's Day Off.'"  This is a substantial look at cast of the film through interviews and other footage.  "The Making of" is a typical featurette with both interviews and behind-the-scenes footage.  "Who is Ferris Bueller?" takes an in depth look at the character of Ferris.  "The World According to Ben Stein" has Stein examining his role in the film.  "Vintage Ferris Bueller: The Lost Tapes" contains more interview footage.  Lastly there is a Class Album, which is a photo gallery.  There are no deleted scenes or blooper reels.  Most disappointedly, there are no audio commentary tracks.  Boo!

"Ferris Bueller's Day Off" is a track terrific film that is worthy of adding to your Blu-ray collection simply for its prominence in film history.  The video quality is rather poor, but yields a nice increase in details.  The audio quality is nothing spectacular by certainly stable.  In the end, you simply must own this film on the Blu-ray format.

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